The 24 Hours of LeMons traveling circus has been unpacking the Tilt-a-Whirl at Race Sonoma aka LeMons Sears Point since 2010, and this legendary and challenging track always attracts a full house of hooptie-racing fanatics. 150 teams showed up for the 2016 Sears Pointless race, and the car inspections took place on Friday. The weather promises to be dry for a change, which means we won’t see 145 of those cars spin out during the first few minutes, and it appears that the West Coast racers are picking up the gauntlet thrown down by those GM Dustbuster minivan-racing Midwesterners. That’s right, we have three minivans competing this weekend!
The Westafarians, a bunch of tie-dyed Vanagon mechanics who work at GoWesty, have been racing in LeMons for a few years now. We have seen quite a few vans of various types and sizes in LeMons, and these guys have been among the quickest of the bunch… back when they had a VR6 engine swap in their bus. Now they’ve put the original Wasserboxer, with its two-digit horsepower and way-worse-than-questionable reliability, back in their bus, which allowed the LeMons Supreme Court to place their van in Class C.
The Vanagon world is a small one, and so some friends of the Westafarians put together this Vanagon to challenge them on the track. This led to the spectacle of the hippie VW bus (emitting dense clouds of smoke and dub music) being chased v…e…r…y… s…l…o…w…l…y around the paddock by the Polizei VW bus, siren beeping Euro-style.
The Polizei Vanagon has a Subaru engine swap, thanks to a cheap transmission adapter scored by these VW parts hoarders. You’d think that would be an improvement, but in LeMons there are few engines less reliable than these things.
Meanwhile, the Pit Crew Revenge team, which has a vast fleet of LeMons cars and an ever-shifting array of drivers, picked up this 1998 Honda Odyssey minivan for such a cheap price that they had no choice but to install a roll cage.
The Odyssey came with the complete set of San Francisco Bay Area lefty bumper stickers already installed. All three of these vans will be competing in Class C. Place your bets— will it be the stock Vanagon, the Subaru-swapped Vanagon, or the high-mile Odyssey rolling on rock-hard junkyard tires that gets the most laps? Check out the live racecast on Saturday and Sunday to find out!